Art is defined as having various branches of creativity, through painting, music, literature, dance and crafts.  Just about everything can be viewed as art.  Certain activities are recognized as an art, even if it does not involve painting or creating something from scratch.  There are so many benefits to the power of art, it is amazing we do not see and do more of it!

  • Reduces stress, anxiety and depression. How does this work, simply by being a distraction?  It gives your brain a chance to stop thinking about the things that may be bringing you down or is negative in life.  Ruminating on negative thoughts is one of the leading causes of depression.  Art is an opportunity to break these cycles of rumination, helping you to clear your mind.
  • Boost self-confidence, creative thinking and self-esteem. Anytime that you must figure out how to form or create something new, the brain is required to use neurons that it normally would not use.  As you continue to see successful outcomes, this leads to better confidence and self-esteem.
  • Improves connectivity and plasticity of the brain. This is because anytime you must be use out of the box thinking, your brain must create new neuronal pathways to support this. As a result, new brain cells develop along with new connections in the brain.  It is thought that intelligence has to due the number of connections the brain has, not the size.  This is why individuals who seem to have answers to multiple issues seem intelligent, it’s because they have multiple things that created new neurological pathways.
  • Art increases empathy and tolerance. When looking at art, it provides pleasure.  This pleasure is a result of dopamine being released when looking at art or completing an art project.  These feel good hormones help use cope and understand others better.
  • Though the list goes on, the last one I am going to share; are improves quality of life for those with dementia. Dementia mainly thought of as a memory problem, there are other issues such as agitation, aggression, depression, anxiety and insomnia. Creating art engages the left and right hemispheres of the brain along with other neurological activities.  This in turn can calm dementia patients down, along with making them feel better.

Looking for some inspiration?  Visit our Pinterest page to see fun and functional ways you can practice in your community!

 

This information is not intended to take the place of any advice given to you by your healthcare professional(s).

Kaleb Roudabush
Wellness Coordinator